Advantages of Using a Trust over a Will

Numerous individuals opt to use a trust or a will as their main estate planning tool. Both of these documents serve important functions in a person’s estate plan. Nevertheless, there are some unique benefits of utilizing a trust over a will.


One unique benefit of utilizing a trust over a will is the personal privacy that it provides. Wills must be probated. This involves the court having jurisdiction over the case. When a will is probated, it ends up being a matter of public record. Some courts allow any such documents to be accessed by anyone with access to the court system. A trust offers privacy due to the fact that it is not a matter of public record. It is administered privately by the named trustee.


Using a trust offers higher control over the properties and earnings. In a will, a gift is offered to the named recipient. A trust enables the grantor to establish a series of guidelines for the trustee to follow about how the property ought to be utilized. In this way, the grantor can make guaranteed directions about how to manage the trust property.


Some individuals do not want to offer a straight-out gift to another person before or after their death. In a will, there are no conditions to these presents. Nevertheless, in a trust, the grantor can establish conditions about when an individual can receive presents from the trust. For example, the trust may need the trustee to refrain from providing trust funds to a recipient until she or he finishes college, tests negative on a drug test or reaches a specific age.

Probate Avoidance

Using a trust may help an individual prevent the probate procedure. Probate is worried about the assets that a person owns at the time of his/her death. If the person owns no property, his or her estate does not go through this process. A trust transfers legal ownership from the grantor to the trust itself. Not going through probate typically helps an individual’s estate be dealt with much more efficiently without the added expenditures and time-consuming nature of the probate process.


Another benefit of using the probate procedure instead of a will is that the grantor can still maintain the assets during his or her lifetime. If he or she ends up being handicapped, the trust may have language that enables the trust funds to be utilized for his or her own care. The property in a trust can be offered for the grantor’s usage in case of special needs or other unanticipated situations. Having a trust likewise makes it possible to constantly handle property, earnings and trust funds throughout the grantor’s disability, which would not be managed with just a will in location given that a will does not make arrangements when it comes to special needs.

Avoidance of Conservatorship Procedures

Since a trust can offer the management of assets during an individual’s disability or incapacitation, potential conservatorship proceedings might be prevented. This type of court proceeding is often invasive and might need constant court involvement. Guardianship or conservatorship proceedings can be intricate and pricey, often needing a bond, yearly accounting and additional legal fees.


A revocable trust is often more flexible than a will. It might be more valuable in cases involving recipients and properties that are in other states. With a will, there may be a need to establish a probate case in each state where property is positioned. Trusts can also be easily changed.

Quicker Personality

When properties have currently been transferred to the trust, it might be much faster for the trustee to deal with these assets according to the guidelines in the trust file than it would consider the administrator of a will to dispose of the properties. When going through the probate procedure, the administrator needs to supply notice to known successors and financial institutions and pay off financial obligations before any distribution to recipient can happen. On the other hand, assets in a revocable trust may be liquidated or dispersed more rapidly.

Legal Assistance

Individuals who are considering preparing a trust or a will might wish to talk to an estate planning legal representative. He or she can discuss the benefits of utilizing a trust in addition to a will. She or he can make suggestions based upon the specific factors to consider of the client. She or he might even suggest utilizing both documents, such as by utilizing a pour-over will that positions any property owned at the time of the testator’s death into the trust.